Tycoons, Oligarchs and Conglomerates: Vienna hosts OSCE speaker on media plurality

| February 9, 2015
Vienna OSCE guest on media freedoms

Following Mijatović’s talk, discussion with students, faculty, staff, and guests touched on the role online media can play in countries where press freedoms are restricted.

Webster University’s Vienna campus welcomed Dunja Mijatović, representative on Freedom of the Media at the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe (OSCE), for a talk on the issue of media plurality. As a representative for the OSCE since 2010 and one of the founders of the Communications Regulatory Agency of Bosnia Herzegovina, Mijatović shared her thoughts and experiences on media freedom for society today with Webster Vienna Private University staff, students and outside guests during her speech.

Media plurality is increasing throughout Europe. Without a variety of voices able to reach its audience, basic freedoms cannot be practiced, said Mijatović in her Feb. 5 visit.

Currently, there are “no rules, no legally binding documents that specifically focus on the monopoly of media,” Mijatović said. She indicated that there are no international rules that prohibit politicians from owning media and that indeed anyone can own media. This issue calls for her and the OSCE to step up and aid those that need help with these situations. “The last thing I want is to tell journalists how to do their job,” Mijatović declared.

With 57 participating states in the OSCE, this organization tries to step in and alleviate some of the issues or help those journalists that have been falsely arrested. The efforts of OSCE are the only way some countries are involved in any type of dialogue.

After Mijatović’s speech, the floor opened for questions. An intense discussion on online media led to Mijatović acknowledging that this type of media and citizen journalists such as bloggers may “be the light at the end of the tunnel.” This type of media outlet gives journalists in countries without freedom the ability to report as they would like.

The event ended on an upbeat note, with Mijatović stating, “Believe in journalism. We need journalism.”

Tags: ,

Category: Campus Snapshots

Comments are closed.